Considering that I haven’t been to a beach ALL summer, I decided it was time. So I went to Ocean Grove, NJ (a Monmouth County beach) with my partner-in-crime Danielle whom it seems I do everything with. Ocean Grove is the quaint, little town that you read about in novels and magazines but you never think exists. It’s just too perfect. Hidden gem is an understatement.
Picturesque sand dunes at OG
As the title of this post states, OG is most definitely off the beaten path. It’s walking distance from Belmar (another hoppin’ Monmouth county spot) yet it doesn’t attract the same “crowd” that you would get at Belmar…you know the crowd I’m talking about. It’s very family-oriented and very clean. This is the place to go if you want to truly relax and not have to deal with snot-nose teenagers playing frisbee, kicking sand all over you and your stuff, and dropping expletives at every opportunity (there are a few exceptions here and there where said teenagers will show up). The beach is usually filled with alot of locals as well which adds to my liking of this beach because I know that locals are going to treat their beach right and most likely won’t be ‘acting a fool’ for a lack of more sophisticated terminology.
Absolutely gorgeous colonial beach homes
Horse-drawn carriages roam the quaint streets
It did cost $7 per person to get onto the beach and while it is cheaper than most other NJ beaches, it makes me rehash my grief with this great state. Why in the hell do we need to pay to get onto our beaches???!!! We pay the second highest taxes in the nation and yet we still have to shell out $20 or more to get on them….ugh. It disgusts me but hey, if all beaches were as pristine as OG, I wouldn’t mind as much. End rant.
Underneath the OG Pier
I found a sand dollar
But if I had to rate OG on a scale of 1-10 comparing to other New Jersey beaches, I would give it a 10 easily. It’s clean. It’s scenic. The streets are almost too perfectly lined with trees and antique streetlamps. It offers a quaint little downtown-esque street full of shops, restaurants, cafes and quite a few antique stores if you’re into that sort of thing. If you’re hungry, thirsty, or nature’s calling, all you have to do is thrown on a t-shirt and your flippy-floppys and walk a few hundred feet to Main Avenue and you have everything at your disposal.
Water rolling in
Well, that’s it. The secret is out. If you’re looking for an above-average New Jersey beach experience, check out Ocean Grove. Enjoy.
This past Friday (8/7/09) I went with the girlfriend to Monmouth Battlefield in Manalapan, NJ to take in the sights and test out my spiffy new Nikon camera. It was a gorgeous day all around so I can’t complain. I’m loving the camera so far but I still have alot to learn…
To be completely honest, this park is amazing…a true hidden gem. For one, it’s free. Two, the views are second-to-none. Three, IT’S EMPTY. I can count on one hand the number of bodies that I saw throughout this 2,928 acre piece of majestic earth. The views are uninhibited and allow you to see for miles. The lands maintain a nice balance between being manicured and being rugged. The farm land is pristine and for the most part, untouched which is rare for the state of New Jersey. There are some remote trails as well and when you walk through them, you instantly get transported to a lush and seemingly tropical locale where plants, flowers and wildlife abound.
It was a nice change from the hustle and bustle of everyday New Jersey life. It’s clear to me that many people don’t know about this natural escape…and to a point, it would be nice if it stayed that way… unspoiled, untampered beauty. So if you’re reading this, SHHHHH…